Who are Shishu Mandir?
For over 30 years, Shishu Mandir has been working towards creating a generation of children who are not bound by the circumstances they were born into. Founded by Hella Mundhra in 1983 as a children's home, Shishu Mandir today offers a comprehensive support system with free schooling, vocational training and higher education. The entire community, where the Shishu children come from, is supported through various welfare projects to allow the children to develop to the best of their abilities and also as a way of igniting hope within the communities.
Shishu Mandir has an annual assessment process to identify the most deserving children for admission into their school and home. Given that each classroom is limited to 10 students, the process of assessing families is quite elaborate and time-consuming. On average, ten students are assessed for every one student that is selected.
Social workers from Shishu Mandir used paper-based forms to gather data and assess the eligibility of families and children for admission. Some of the assessment criteria such as the household composition and assets are periodically reassessed for each family whose child or children attend the Shishu Mandir School. This process was completely paper-based and no technology was used to aid the process of identifying the most deserving children for admission into the school.
Another area of concern in the Shishu Mandir process was that it did not track the progress or outcomes of a child in school or family circumstance over the tenure of their stay in school, which could be 10-12 years. While Shishu Mandir used a basic IT system to capture a child's academic information, there was no system in place to track their overall progress and circumstances. This created an issue as donors often look for progress reports from an academic standpoint and also from a socio-economic progress standpoint.
Shishu Mandir partnered with Diona to implement Diona Mobile Visits, on Android phones, for their social workers who mainly work in the field. With the use of Diona Mobile Visits and Diona Mobility Data Manager, Shishu Mandir social workers can now digitally capture and assess child admission related assessments from their mobile devices, both while offline and online. They can also capture the progress of their existing students and their families on various fronts using the comprehensive notes functionality in Diona Mobile Visits.
The solution is completely cloud-based, and hosted on the Microsoft Azure platform. The project implementation, which involved configuring Diona Mobile Visits for the unique needs of Shishu Mandir and deployment to Microsoft Azure was completed over a 2-week period. The Shishu Mandir team are now utilizing Diona Mobility solutions to serve the children and families in their community more effectively.
Diona and Shishu Mandir are working together closely to identify enhancements to the technology solutions that could benefit the users in the future, especially in the area of reporting and analytics. Shishu Mandir plans to expand the usage of the solution for tracking students undergoing vocations training and also potentially to help their self-help groups which form a part of their village welfare initiative.